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Story Publication logo June 1, 2012

El Salvador’s Vanishing Coast

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Few countries are as vulnerable to climate change as El Salvador. In the Americas, only Haiti has seen more widespread deforestation. El Salvador's ravaged watersheds are unable to cope with the extreme storms that increasingly batter Central America, leading to devastating floods downriver that now occur almost yearly. Meanwhile, rising seas are expected to swallow up between 10 percent and 28 percent of its coastal lands. That process has already started in the mangrove forests of the Bajo Lempa, which are slowly being overtaken by the Pacific's crashing waves, potentially turning local people who eke out a living collecting crabs in the mangroves into climate refugees.

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